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Auction PR Publicity Announcements News and Information

Garth’s Celebrates Americana with Annual Labor Day Weekend Auction

Antiques, camaraderie, tradition, and plain, old fun – that is focus of Garth’s Auctions’ Annual Labor Day Weekend Americana Auction scheduled to take place on September 4 and 5, 2009. Before you break out the barbeques on Monday, jump in your car Friday and follow the road to Ohio’s oldest premier auction house to preview and bid on the early American antiques, art and accessories.

What evokes more spirit than Native American artwork and accessories Garth’s has over two dozen pieces of fine 19th and 20th century oil paintings, watercolors and prints to be offered from this category. The cover lot of the catalog features the rugged depiction of young braves racing horses through the desert by Frank Tenney Johnson (American, 1874-1939 ). Titled Navajo Horse Race on the stretcher, the 26 ½” x 32 ½” oil on canvas is signed and dated 1927 in the lower left.

FrankTenney Johnson

Expected to be one of the sale highlights with a conservative estimate of $10/20,000, the painting was consigned by a longtime collector from Detroit, Michigan. President of Garth’s, Jeff Jeffers, who worked closely with the consignor, declared it is among his favorite pieces in the sale. “The painting is coming out of the family home into the public eye for the very first time. The owner has had it for 50+ years and he was fortunate enough to inherit it from his grandfather who bought it in the 1920s. With such a wonderful provenance, Garth‘s is proud to represent the sale of this important and dynamic painting.”

A colorful portrait of a Southwestern American Indian wearing a bandana by California artist Henry Rashen( 1854-1937) is also sure to command attention. Titled Hawkeye and measuring 19 ½” x 17 ¼”, it is conservatively estimated at $2/4,000. Other works on canvas and paper by artists such as Antowine Warrior, Charles Frank, Troy Denton, Chuck Knowles, Gerry Metz, Rebecca Gregg, and McKinney & Hall will make a vibrant display in the gallery. Among the other Native American materials to be sold, a figure of a Story Teller by Caroline Sando of Jemez, New Mexico is an eye catcher( Est. $5/800 ).

A selection of historic firearms will be featured in the catalog. The standout of the group is an engraved flintlock shotgun marked for J.B. Baucheron (w. 1823-1826, Paris). Other choice examples will include an engraved Smith & Wesson revolver with mother of pearl grips, a pair of percussion pistols with Damascus barrels, a Dovar over-under pistol, a Stahl percussion rifle, an engraved Colt single action revolver, and a Mortimer flintlock pistol. A chromolithographed cardboard Winchester trade sign, model 1897, will cause many bidders to take a shot at this lot. The “Double-W” version, with 226 items affixed to the board (9 containers of caps, 20 shotgun shells, and 197 rifle and revolver shells) is adorned with chromolithographed images of a moose, a duck, and a pair of bear hunters. Retaining the factory label, as well as “No. 852” stenciled, verso, the sign is mounted in the original oak frame and carries and estimate of $12/18,000.

The labor of many young girls will also be appreciated when a fresh-to-the-market collection of over 30 samplers crosses the block. A fine 1836 New York sampler by Harriet Augusta Higgins of Brooklyn, Kings County is a silk on linen masterpiece with a moral verse over a colorful and impressive basket overflowing with grapes and roses( Estimate $2,5/5,000). Harriet, the youngest child of Michael Dunning Higgins (c.1780-1857) and Betty Gregory (1784-1862) was born in Brooklyn in 1825 so this work was completed at age 11. A sampler with very similar basket and verse dated 1836 and signed New York sold at Skinner, November 1, 2002, lot 475. Carrying the same estimate and a very broad appeal is the earliest sampler in the sale from New Hampshire dated 1796. The work of Mercy Cro[s]s of Canterbury, Merrimack County, this silk on linen has pyramids of fruit piled in colorful baskets, trailing vines of pink and gold flowers and brightly colored birds perching, flying and sipping nectar. Mercy’s sampler shares characteristics with late 18th century Canterbury, New Hampshire samplers including the dark outlines, tiered trees, rolling foreground and the distinctive center basket( See Ring, Girlhood Embroidery, p.230-235).

With historically strong sales in not only Americana, but more specifically in Ohio folk art, it is not a surprise to find Garth’s offering several pieces by Columbus, Ohio artist Elijah Pierce. The star of the group is a painted and relief carved wooden panel, signed and dated “August 1989” of a man chasing chickens which is estimated at $4/7,000. An angel carving and a cowboy carving by Pierce each demonstrate the wonderful whimsy of the artist and carry estimates of $1,5/1,800 and $1/2,000, respectively. A folk art carved sandstone statue of an American Indian by another Ohio artist, Ernest “Popeye” Reed, depicts a seated Indian adorned with a feathered headdress and bear claw necklace. A cross-over item for many collectors, it is expected to bring $1/2,000. Artists from Ohio are much sought after as well with John Henry Twachtman being chief among. Born in Cincinnati, Ohio, to German immigrant parents, Twachtman was known for his talent to express the spirit of the places he painted. A lovely, vertical landscape by Twachtman will be offered from an estate of an owner who had it in their possession since the 1930s.

As always a wonderful representation of the best Americana will attract the greatest audience with 2 painted wall cupboards, a painted shallow corner cupboard, decorated blanket chests, fraktur, weathervanes, decoys, and more. A 19th century country pillar and scroll clock from Allentown, Pennsylvania with broken-arch pediment, full columns, and turned feet should easily reach its estimate of $2,5/3,500. Garth’s consignor representative Andrew Richmond noted what struck him about the clock. “This clock is understated with a great original surface and a wonderful painted tin tablet with oculus. There is a small group of these clocks, all in similar cases, that have their origins in Allentown, Pennsylvania, but this one is unusual due to the use of the imported Black Forest movement with original, polychrome dial.” Richmond is also likes the early 19th century Fairfield County, Ohio two-drawer cherry stand to be sold. “I’m a huge fan of objects that display something distinctive about their regional origins. And while the carved sunburst is not unique to Fairfield County, makers there seemed to have been big proponents of it. From formal objects to purely utilitarian objects, the carved sunburst appears everywhere in early 19th-century Fairfield County furniture.” A delightful, oil on canvas triple portrait of three children and their cat measures a substantial 29“ x 36“, but bears a reasonable estimate of $2/4,000. Another moment of Americana in a smaller package is the portrait of a cotton picker by William Aiken Walker. Depicting a lone male slave in a cotton field carrying a basket on his head, the 12 ¼“ x 6 ¼“ oil is desirable at $4/8,000. Of the quilts and coverlets to be offered an appliqué quilt with four shield breasted, spread winged eagles in shades of red, pumpkin and green on a white ground is a noticeable choice for pure Americana. Ex Bill Koch collection, the quilt should fetch $5/800.

The Labor Day Americana sale will take place in two sessions on Friday, September 4th at 2:00 p.m. and on Saturday, September 5th at 10:00 a.m. Preview hours will be held August 31 through September 2 from 10:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m., an extended preview held on September 3rd from 10:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. , and then each day of the sale from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and 9:00 a.m to 10:00 a.m., respectively. An illustrated color catalogue is available for $30( if you order by August 21st you receive $5 off) and in Garth’s effort to promote an eco-friendly alternative, the company has introduced a digital, flip book catalog for review on the company’s website,

Garth’s is located at 2690 Stratford Road, Delaware, Ohio 43015. For additional information, please contact Garth’s Auctions at 740.362.4771 or via email at [email protected].